According to a Consumer Reports survey, of those of us who are trying to lose weight – and there are many – 74% eat more fruits and vegetables. Eating more fruit and veggie servings is effective for weight maintenance and it’s the very best way to tackle poor health as well. No wonder it’s catching on for those with weight concerns. Other strategies from the survey included portion control (71%) cutting back on sugar (69%) and replacing a snack with an activity (45%).
Fruits and vegetables don’t just provide vital nutrients, they are full of satisfying fiber and provide more food volume for fewer calories. They also take up space on your plate where less nutritious, more caloric food would be. Eating fruits and vegetables doesn’t just help weight: it contributes to disease prevention and longevity. If you are taking a hard look at your health in the coming year, scrutinizing your fruit and veggie intake is the way to begin.
Are you resolving to be healthier in 2012? Here are our five all-time best strategies for achieving your goals once and for all. It’s no surprise that fruit and vegetable servings are at the heart of each one.
Our 5 Best Healthy Eating Resolutions for 2012
1) Cook. Bad eating habits can be tied directly back to the food we don’t cook ourselves. Less than 60% of us make our meals in our kitchens even though we know it’s the key to healthy eating. This year, resolve to learn the basics and put them into practice. Fruits & Veggies More Matters has 10 healthy ways to cook with fruits and veggies to get you started.
2) Take advantage of frozen. For those relying on the availability of fresh, nutritious food to keep their diet healthy, frozen is the savior of modern culture. Why? It’s whole, nutritious food that’s there any time of year. Keep your freezer stocked along with your pantry so good food is always at the ready.
3) Add color. Healthy eating means putting a rainbow on your plate. Eating across the color spectrum means you are naturally getting the variety of nutrients your body needs. And, foods with concentrated color are foods with high amounts of powerful phytonutrients. Eat dark leafy greens, red tomatoes, purple cabbage, blue blueberries, orange carrots, and yellow squashes, and you’ve conquered the color spectrum.
4) Add one. This year, add one serving of a fruit or vegetable to every meal. Here’s a post from 2010 that will help you add a serving every day for an entire month. F&V has a similar pledge you can take to promise yourself just one extra fruit or veggie a day: one small step that delivers a giant step for the health of humankind.
5) Less processed, more whole. Populations with diets based on whole foods tend to see lower rates of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and other health problems. The more we stay away from processed food and eat food with no labels, no claims, and under three ingredients on their ingredients list (or better yet, with no list at all) the healthier we’ll be, and the longer we’ll live.
Resolve to be Healthy in 2012! Fruits and Veggies More Matters has more Realistic Resolutions for healthy eating.